NZI Rural Women New Zealand Business Awards Winners Announced

October 23, 2018 11:40 pm

Rural Women New Zealand is proud to announce the category winners and finalists for the NZI Rural Women New Zealand Awards 2018.


The NZI Rural Women New Zealand Business Awards are an opportunity to showcase the innovation and entrepreneurial excellence of women who own small rural businesses while also supporting their local communities.

On Saturday, 20 October National President, Fiona Gower announced the winners of the NZI Rural Women New Zealand Business Awards. Please read below this years category winners, who will all now compete for the Supreme Award announced at the Awards ceremony on Tuesday, 20 November.


The Awards are being held on the evening of Tuesday, 20 November and will be a fantastic evening, showcasing and celebrating women in business.


Download the registration form to attend the NZI Rural Women New Zealand Business Awards here.


Creative Arts Award � Sponsored by Shear Warmth Wool Blankets

Awarded to Sophie Siers of Millwood Press Ltd

The Creative Arts Award recognises a business specialising in the creative arts working in a rural environment or using rural materials.


“One of the changing aspects of rural life is the growing amount of industry and secondary businesses run from the farm to try and support smaller family farms. Many of these are run by women and it�s fantastic to see Rural Women New Zealand offering this award to showcase these sometimes amazing businesses from rural New Zealand,” says Sophie.


Emerging Business � Sponsored by Treadwells Barristers and Solicitors

Awarded to Hannah O’Brien of Hunt and Gather Bee Co

The Emerging Business Award recognises a business starting out in its journey and achieving exceptional results. 

“Being involved in the NZI Rural Women New Zealand Business Awards has been a really wonderful experience for me. It has given me a chance to look at our business and identify all of our strengths and achievements so far, and to re-evaluate our future goals. It has reminded me of what is really important to us as a company and what we value in our business,” says Hannah.


Innovation � Sponsored by Hynds

Awarded to Bridget Canning of WIZwireless

The Innovation Award recognises an enterprise that challenges the status quo to bring something new and innovative to the market or utilising rural resources in an innovative way.

“I wanted to work from home and found the lack of decent internet very frustrating, we decided to do something about it ourselves and WIZwireless was born. That was 2005. 13 years on, the company has a strong subscriber base and it�s growing every day. Winning the Innovation section of the NZI Rural Women Business Awards 2018 is amazing. I thank NZI, the other sponsors and supporters of this competition for making this achievement possible,” says Bridget.



Rural Champion — Sponsored by FNZC

Awarded to Robyn McKenzie of Fly My Sky. 

The Rural Champion is a person or business who champions the rural sector or a rural enterprise — an outstanding contributor who goes above and beyond the normal in their support rural enterprise.

“Over many years of working in rural areas, I have been fortunate to meet women working exceptionally hard in diverse businesses, often in difficult circumstances, with little readily available peer support and little time for themselves. I believe the NZI Rural Women New Zealand Business Awards offer women encouragement, support and excellent networking opportunities,” says Robyn.


Love of the Land — Sponsored by Agrisea

Awarded to Marie Taylor of Plant Hawke’s Bay.


The Love of the Land Award recognises a business harnessing the potential of New Zealand’s land, environment or products of the land, to create a successful business enterprise.



“Being a part of the NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards is a tremendous opportunity for me and my business, Plant Hawke’s Bay. It is a wonderful way to showcase my business and build its profile, enabling me to tell my native plant story to a national audience. It is also great to meet other inspiring rural women and hear of their stories of business success,” says Marie.


Thank you to Premier Partner NZI; sponsors Dove River Peonies, FNZC, Hynds, ShearWarmth, and Treadwells; and supporters Access Community Health, Agrisea and SWAZI.






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